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Reasons why the iPhone 14 needs to maintain the notch in place

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It’s iconic, and I don’t think it’s time to give it up just yet (yet)

My favourite storey of the week has been that Apple may be ditching the notch on the iPhone 14.

Instead of going with the “pill and punch” design, Apple may choose for a new iPhone that does away with the notch entirely. That theory has been around for a while, dating back to when the iPhone X debuted in 2017.

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Because Apple requires a space to host all the sensors and cameras that enable Face ID to work, this makes little sense for the company.

Don’t mistake what I’m trying to say, though: I fervently want to see the notch and all other things that impede a perfectly smooth screen disappear from smartphones. Notches and holes in the screen of each new phone are a necessary evil, but I can’t wait for the day when they’re no longer considered odd.

But it’s not going to happen in 2022, in my opinion. There’s a chance I’m mistaken. It is possible that the iPhone 14 and 14 Pro will feature the notch, but the iPhone 14 Max may have something else. It’s possible that Apple may rip up its own design guidelines.

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As someone who has covered every iPhone introduction since the 3G, I can say with confidence that the notch will be here to stay.

A vital notch.

Everything that Apple does is done because they are required to. In the early days of the iPhone, you couldn’t copy and paste across applications. For years, it lacked a high-quality camera.

When I tested the battery life of the iPhone 13 series, I was surprised that Apple hadn’t made a big deal out of this large gain in battery life in the iPhone 13 introduction.

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In addition to the IR emitter that powers Face ID, the notch also houses the iPhone’s front-facing camera.

Because Face ID relies on these sensors, the iPhone X features larger sensors than other Android phones. This was the best compromise Apple could come up with when designing the device.

I’m not seeing technologies on other phones that could replace the notch, and I don’t think it’s possible right now.

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Ugly alternatives to the notch are out there.

I’m sorry, I’ve just made a complete and utter fool of myself. Even though it’s reported that the next iPhone will have an upgraded camera, I can’t see that happening.

In a few new phones, the punched hole and pill-shaped aperture allow for more screen to flow out over the edges, resulting in an increase in screen real estate.

(Image credit: Apple)

They may look better, but it’s hard to see how they’re much better than a notch that sits in the middle of the screen.

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Because these two different-sized holes are implemented asymmetrically, there’s a deeper problem. The new Apple shops’ edge-to-edge chairs have the same curve as the iPhone 11‘s, so I don’t understand why the firm would put something so hideous on there.

Apple could implement a pop-up sensor, but it may fail and also prevent the smooth display of alerts when you just hover your face over them – a very improbable scenario considering that this is a popular feature. Apple could also implement a face tracking sensor.

The ‘real’ technology isn’t quite ready yet.

The actual “all-display” iPhone is, of course, the objective here. It’s a device that doesn’t obstruct the screen in any way, and where sensors are present but concealed.

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Moving the earpiece and sensors to the frame or placing them beneath the display are your only viable options.

Android phones have been doing this for a long time now, and the ZTE Axon 30 is a fantastic example of one that performs an excellent job at taking selfies without a visible front camera.

Apple, on the other hand, is adamant about trumpeting its camera capabilities at every opportunity. As a result, Face ID will likely be slower and/or less accurate if a camera is positioned behind the display.

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Apple’s image processing can only do its thing if screen technology improves to allow in enough light, and IR sensors for security can be downsized enough to sit in the frame… but we’re not there yet.

People don’t mind the notch since it’s so well-known.

As I sit here in a cafeteria, thinking about the notch and whether or not it will persist, I see three individuals in my close proximity all using current iPhones that include the cut-out screen section at the top.

In reality, the notch isn’t perfect, but Apple has embraced it and people aren’t too concerned. The fact that the iPhone 13 is expected to surpass sales records, with an estimated 40 million units sold, suggests that the notch isn’t a deal breaker for anyone trying to decide which iPhone to purchase.

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(Image credit: Ark Click/Weibo)

On Reddit’s r/apple subreddit, a conversation over whether the notch should stay or go explains the sentiment:

“I’m OK with the notch. It’s ignored by my head… My nose is always visible to my eyes, but my brain ignores it, just as my eyes see my nose all the time.”

It’s as if it’s not there anymore. Another poster on the forum simplifies things even further:

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“Yes, [Apple] did its utmost to integrate the notch into the overall design. Yes, they’ve taken use of this “design abnormality” for their branding, and it’s been translated into a really unique “icon.” Yes, it isn’t necessarily [sic] ugly or erroneous, but it is.

“But. In no way, shape, or form is it a feature. …a compromise in the overall design”

The notch has been embraced by Apple, as seen by this reference. It’s gone from being an eyesore to a symbol.

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Instead of hiding the notch, it has become an emblem for the phone. As soon as someone sees a smartphone logo with a cutout, they immediately associate it with an Apple iPhone.

If Apple had not gone so far with the idea, it would not have been allowed to incorporate it in its MacBook Pro last year, even though it obviously doesn’t when compared to several competitors who have not.

So, it seems that the iPhone 14 will still have a notch. I don’t see how Apple could abandon it.

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However, I couldn’t believe that Apple would have ditched the headphone jack on the iPhone 7 despite the fact that many people desired it at the time (and still do). However, Apple has been uncompromising in its shoulder-shrugging attitude toward the requests to bring back the Lightning headphone jack adapter.

(Image credit: Apple)

Maybe I’ll be sitting here in September talking about how Apple has discovered a way to stack the pill and punch design ‘elegantly’ in the centre of its screen..

Another possibility is that the notch has been eliminated entirely, saving the company just a fraction of its vast R&D spend.

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That or the notch will be 7 percent smaller and a tad bit higher, which would enough for another year to stimulate iPhone upgrades and sales.

It’s possible that the iPhone 13 is the best option for you if you don’t mind paying a little more. As long as the iPhone 14 isn’t released until August, you’ll be able to get a good bargain, so check out the newest pricing now and see what you think.

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